Suggestions When Preparing the Application
We encourage interested students to submit applications, however, we will state that not all students that apply are accepted. The graduate committee reviews each application carefully, and provides the following helpful suggestions for applications. By no means does inclusion of all these elements guarantee admission. Admission can be a very competitive process and we recommend taking the time to prepare your materials for submission.
Introductory letter: Address the letter to “The Graduate Committee” (“Al comité de estudios graduados”). Please do not include letters of more than two (2) pages in length. Follow the instructions carefully and be sure to include ALL of the elements mentioned above. Especially concentrate on your objectives for applying to the MA in Spanish program. Mention specific goals you would like to reach by entering the program. Make sure the letter is in Spanish, and have someone read and edit the letter for grammatical errors.
CV or resume in Spanish: Follow standard instructions and formats for resume and CV preparation to include educational experience, professional experience, etc. Make sure the CV is in Spanish. Again, have someone read and edit the document for style and grammatical errors.
The writing sample: This is an important part of the application process. Students may include papers from prior Spanish courses. YOU MUST SUBMIT AT LEAST 6 PAGES. This means you can submit a couple of shorter papers together to reach the required 6-page expectation. Please do not submit an excess of pages (for instance entire novels, publications, etc.). Keep in mind, if you declare in your introductory letter that you are interested in linguistics, do not submit a paper dealing with a literary analysis or critique. Likewise, if you indicate that your area of interest is literature, submitting a linguistic analysis or paper is not recommended. What you are trying to show is that you have the ability to write about the subject of interest in an academic manner. If you do not have a writing sample already produced in the declared area of interest, please contact the Graduate Director for suggestions.
Language evaluation form: Download the NMSU Language Evaluation Form your our MA in Spanish website. Have someone who is familiar with your Spanish abilities complete the form. Follow the instructions carefully. Ideally, this is to be completed by a current or former professor. Contact the Graduate Director on what to do for instances where this may not be possible. The only examination results that we accept in lieu of the NMSU Language Evaluation Form is the official rating certificate for the ACTFL OPI exam. All other state or local examination results are not accepted. The language evaluation form is required of ALL applicants, regardless of whether or not you are a native or heritage-speaker of Spanish.
Letters of recommendation: These need to be recent letters (dated within the last 6 mos.). Letters can be written in Spanish or English. Ideally, these letters will come from former professors (they don’t need to be Spanish professors). For instances in which former professors are not available, we do accept letters from principals, supervisors, department heads, colleagues, etc. These letters should always address academic potential and likelihood for completing the program. They should not be what are considered character references. Letters from friends and family members are strongly discouraged.